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Top 50 young players to watch at Euro 2016: 30-21

| 31.05.2016

Jamie Clark, Sports Editor | May 27, 2016

To celebrate Euro 2016, Coral are looking at the top 50 young players aged 23 and under before the tournament finals in France begin.

This extended look at talents to watch out for comes in five parts with our countdown starting at 50 and eventually reaching who our football experts consider to be the best youngster in Europe. All players have been valued by respected football stats site Transfermarkt.

Our third part looks at names rated from 30 to 21, and there wasn’t room for everyone in the age bracket because of the expanded format. Who features? Read on below to see who we’ve selected…

30 Stephan El Shaarawy (Italy)

Germany vs. Italy

Date of Birth: October 27th 1992
Position: Striker/Left Wing
Caps: 18
International goals: 3
Current Club: Roma, on loan from AC Milan
Transfermarkt Value: £11.25m

Azzurri attacker El Shaarawy has revived his career with Roma where he has averaged a goal every other game since signing on loan in the winter window. That was enough to persuade Italy national coach Conte to recall the AC Milan-owned forward for the Euros.

El Shaarawy came through Genoa’s ranks when he was just 16 back in 2008, so it’s hard to believe he’s still only 23. If Chelsea cash in on Eden Hazard, then incoming coach Conte could easily turn to this wide left outlet to plug that potential gap at Stamford Bridge.

29 Andre Gomes (Portugal)

FC Barcelona v Valencia - La Liga - Camp Nou Stadium

Date of Birth: July 30th 1993
Position: Central Midfield/Attacking Midfield
Caps: 5
International goals: 0
Current Club: Valencia
Transfermarkt Value: £13.5m

A mediocre season for Mestalla giants Valencia means they may be destined to lose Portugal midfielder Gomes, who scored four set up and seven for Los Che this term.

While he is a leading candidate to play in front of Fernando Santos’ ageing back four at Euro 2016, new Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho may go to the Bats with a bid to grab Gomes as ‘the Special One’ prepares to remodel the Red Devils.

28 Breel Embolo (Switzerland)

Portugal Soccer Europe League

Date of Birth: February 14th 1997
Position: Forward
Caps: 9
International goals: 1
Current Club: Basel
Transfermarkt Value: £15m

Teenage talent Embolo was born in Cameroon, but moved to Switzerland when he was young. Picked up by Basel’s academy in 2010, he has exploded onto the domestic scene since making his first-team debut in 2014.

Showing remarkable composure in front of goals for one so young, Embolo has been well into double figures both this and last season. Mauricio Pochettino has a reputation for improving youngsters, so the Swiss sensation should sign for Spurs if Embolo wants to up his game.

27 Marcelo Brozovic (Croatia)

Croatia Israel Soccer Friendly

Date of Birth: November 16th 1992
Position: Central Midfield
Caps: 16
International goals: 4
Current Club: Inter Milan, on loan from Dinamo Zagreb
Transfermarkt Value: £11.25m

All-action midfielder Brozovic struck twice for Croatia in qualifying, and has put in steady Serie A displays for Inter, though his future may lie away from the San Siro, despite striking seven times and making five assists across all competitions in Nerazzurri colours.

Winning back-to-back Prva HNL titles in his homeland, it is now Arsenal who are linked with buying Brozovic as Arsene Wenger continues to overhaul his engine room options.

26 Divock Origi (Belgium)

Borussia Dortmund v Liverpool - UEFA Europa League - Quarter Final - First Leg - Signal Iduna Park Stadium

Date of Birth: April 18th 1995
Position: Striker
Caps: 16
International goals: 3
Current Club: Liverpool
Transfermarkt Value: £6.75m

When you’re in Jurgen Klopp’s favour over compatriot and proven Premier League performer Christian Benteke, then you must be something special. That is the status Origi has enjoyed at Anfield this term, and rewarded his manager’s faith with 10 goals and three assists for the Reds.

Announcing himself on the international stage when scoring the winner in a 2014 World Cup group stage game against Russia, Origi has made steady improvement since, and Liverpool fans can expect him to be a big part of their future.

25 Marcus Rashford (England)

Manchester Utd v Leicester City - Barclays Premier League - Old Trafford

Date of Birth: October 31st 1997
Position: Striker
Caps: 1
International goals: 1
Current Club: Manchester United
Transfermarkt Value: N/A

An attacking options crisis at Old Trafford forced former Man Utd manager Louis van Gaal to blood academy product Rashford. Given the opportunity, this teenager has tucked away eight goals in 18 senior games for the Red Devils.

Fearless forward Rashford has seen that form recognised by Hodgson, who handed him an England debut against Australia, which he capped with a goal. Injuries among the Three Lions roster mean there is a real chance of Rashford getting the chance to showcase his massive potential at the Euro 2016 finals.

24 Julian Draxler (Germany)

Germany vs. Italy

Date of Birth: September 20th 1993
Position: Attacking Midfield/Winger
Caps: 17
International goals: 1
Current Club: Wolfsburg
Transfermarkt Value: £16.5m

A World Cup and DFB Pokal winner already, despite being just 22, Draxler finally made his move away from Schalke last summer to ambitious Wolfsburg, and he has still performed admirably in his debut season with Die Wolfe. Germany are 4/1 second-favourites with Coral to follow up on their global success and win Euro 2016.

Nine goals and eight assists for his club from supporting roles off the front or on the wing hint that there is still more to come from Draxler. Arsenal have long been admirers, so Die Mannschaft national squad regular Draxler may be putting himself in the shop window once again at the France finals.

23 Michy Batshuayi (Belgium)

France Soccer Europa League

Date of Birth: October 2nd 1993
Position: Striker
Caps: 3
International goals: 2
Current Club: Marseille
Transfermarkt Value: £10.5m

Batshuayi has made his mark at Marseille with two terrific campaigns in front of goal, and now there’s hardly a Premier League club that hasn’t been linked with signing him.

Part of an attack-heavy Belgian roster for Euro 2016, Batshuayi bagged international goals on both his debut and second cap. Players from his country have often done well at Everton, so now they’re backed by new investment the Toffees could take Batshuayi to Goodison Park in place of Romelu Lukaku or Kevin Mirallas.

22 Emre Can (Germany)

Liverpool v Villarreal - UEFA Europa League - Semi Final - Second Leg - Anfield

Date of Birth: January 12th 1994
Position: Defensive Midfield/Centre Back/Right Back
Caps: 5
International goals: 0
Current Club: Liverpool
Transfermarkt Value: £11.25m

If only Joachim Low and Brendan Rodgers hadn’t been using Can in defence, because he’s looked a real Rolls Royce of a footballer under the latter’s Anfield successor Klopp in midfield. He’s still made his Germany debut this season, though.

Turning out in two cup finals for the Reds, both in losing efforts, Can continues to develop apace in front of a back four that has consistently let Liverpool down. Some silverware success could come on international duty, however, with the Germans in France.

21 Yannick Ferreira Carrasco (Belgium)

Atletico Madrid v Barcelona - UEFA Champions League - Quarter Final - Second Leg - Vicente Calderon

Date of Birth: September 4th 1993
Position: Winger
Caps: 4
International goals: 0
Current Club: Atletico Madrid
Transfermarkt Value: £15m

Five goals and as many assists from tricky winger Carrasco for Diego Simeone’s side have helped Atleti to reach the Champions League final (in which he scored) in his maiden campaign in Spain. That is evidence of development, with the Belgian stepping up into a strong league from his days at Monaco.

Part of an electric Atletico attack that contains France forward Antoine Griezmann and club legend Fernando Torres, cunning Carrasco could easily be one that catches the eye on international duty with Belgium. Tottenham were interested in capturing Carrasco last summer, and that interest should be retained with compatriots Mousa Dembele and Jan Vertonghen at White Hart Lane.


Discover who was ranked 50-41 by our experts in the first part of this Euros youngsters to watch countdown.

There’s also the 40-31 part of the list to look over.

You’ll find more Euro 2016 content on Coral’s dedicated page.

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Jamie Clark

Athletics aficionado, die-hard snooker fan and Crystal Palace supporter Jamie has written for Coral since February 2014 after spells with Soccerlens and the Press Association as a digital journalist and copywriter. A former East Midlands sports correspondent and Bwin tipster, he is a graduate of both the University of York and University of Sheffield, with a Masters in web journalism from the latter.